Blake Brandel – OL
Brandel was a sixth-round pick of the Vikings earlier this year, making him one of the highest-drafted players on this list. The beefy lineman played tackle in college and there was some talk that Minnesota would try him at guard, but he’s currently listed at tackle on the depth chart.
Things would have to go horribly wrong for Brandel to see playing time this season. The Vikings have two solid starters at the tackle positions this year and both have proven durable. Riley Reiff is having a bounceback season after nearly getting released this past summer and Brian O’Neill is one of the best right tackles in the game.
Behind the starters, Brandel is looking up at Rashod Hill and Oli Udoh. If Reiff were to go down, it’s entirely possible that Minnesota would look to try their second-round pick and current right guard, Ezra Cleveland, at left tackle before they promote Brandel from the practice squad.
Brandel is a player who needs plenty of more reps and he needs to be slowly brought along as he better hones his technique and improves his strength. He has the potential to be a key backup someday, but that day won’t be in this calendar year.